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Housing Authority v. Department of Civil Service

Decided: March 18, 1965.

HOUSING AUTHORITY OF THE CITY OF JERSEY CITY, ETC., APPELLANT,
v.
DEPARTMENT OF CIVIL SERVICE OF THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY, RESPONDENT



Goldmann, Sullivan and Labrecque. The opinion of the court was delivered by Sullivan, J.A.D.

Sullivan

The Housing Authority of the City of Jersey City (Housing Authority) appeals from the disapproval by the Department of Civil Service of the State of New Jersey (Department) of the pay of certain temporary Housing Authority employees for the payroll period ending May 8, 1964.

The facts are undisputed and are as follows: On March 3, 1964, the Housing Authority had in its employ five maintenance repairmen who were temporary employees without permanent status. On that date the Department certified the names of Reynold Hussey and Nicholas Palladino to the Housing Authority for the position of maintenance repairmen. The certification was made from a special re-employment list consisting of former permanent employees of the City of Jersey City who had been laid off from employment.

The Housing Authority refused to appoint the persons certified to it by the Department from the above-mentioned special reemployment list although notified by the Department that refusal to appoint would result in disapproval of the pay

of the temporary maintenance repairmen on its payroll. By letter of May 18, 1964, the Housing Authority was notified that the pay of the temporary maintenance repairmen was disapproved. The present appeal is from such disapproval.

Briefly put, the issue is whether permanent employees of the City of Jersey City who have been laid off from their positions have re-employment rights to similar positions in the Housing Authority now held by temporary employees without permanent status.

The position of the Housing Authority is that a laid-off municipal employee has no such right; that the Housing Authority is an autonomous body distinct from the municipality which created it, and that the Department must maintain separate and distinct reemployment lists for the Housing Authority and the municipality.

We conclude that the maintenance of a common re-employment list for employees of a municipality and employees of the Housing Authority of that municipality was lawful.

Under N.J.S.A. 55:14A-6.1 and 6.2 employees of municipal housing authorities are employed and hold their respective employments within and as part of the classified service and subject to the provisions of subtitle 3 of Title 11, Civil Service.

We are here concerned with the following provisions of that subtitle, dealing with re-employment lists.

N.J.S.A. 11:22-10.1:

"When an employee of a county, municipality, or a school district of this State, or any other agency operating under the provisions of subtitle three, of Title 11 of the Revised Statutes, holding an office or position in the classified service who has been heretofore or is hereafter separated from such service because of economy or otherwise, and not because of any delinquency or misconduct on his part, or whose position or office has been or shall hereafter be abolished, such employee shall, whenever possible, be demoted to some lesser office or position, in such school district or agency or in the same department or organization unit of such county or municipality, in the regular order of demotion ...


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